For Washington State University swimmer Haley Anderson, Earth Day has an extra significance. The junior from Bellevue, Wash., is a two-time Pac-12 All-Academic Second Team honoree and a member of the WSU Honors College.
Anderson is majoring in Natural Resource Sciences and minoring in Forestry and Spanish, with an emphasis on forest restoration ecology. She says her primary focus is restoring the health and productivity of the world's forests.
Looking to counteract the effects of deforestation around the world, Anderson says she's focused on responsible forest management and maintenance, and restoration in areas that need it. She's already working on that project in a local sense, as her Honors College thesis is focused on Ponderosa Pine restoration in the Palouse.
Anderson also is involved with the WSU Forestry Club on campus, which does community service in the area, environmental research projects and conservation efforts in the area.
Regarding the April 22 Earth Day holiday, Anderson says it provides the opportunity to bring environmental issues to light and helps generate interest in her field.
"Earth Day provides a unique opportunity for people of all professions and interests to learn about environmental issues. It encourages people who otherwise have no experience with conservation to become involved in a number of projects," Anderson says. "But above all, the most important part is the possibility that for someone, the day's events spark a long-term interest or even a change in lifestyle."